Posts Tagged ‘Christmas’

Oh, a wiseguy eh?


The true story of the Magi

Matthew 2:1-12 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, in the time of King Herod, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem 2saying, “Where is the one who is born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” 3When King Herod heard this he was alarmed, and all Jerusalem with him. 4After assembling all the chief priests and experts in the law, he asked them where the Christ was to be born. 5“In Bethlehem of Judea,” they said, “for it is written this way by the prophet: 6And you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are in no way least among the rulers of Judah, for out of you will come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.’”

7Then Herod privately summoned the wise men and determined from them when the star had appeared. 8He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and look carefully for the child. When you find him, inform me so that I can go and worship him as well.” 9After listening to the king they left, and once again the star they saw when it rose led them until it stopped above the place where the child was. 10When they saw the star they shouted joyfully. 11As they came into the house and saw the child with Mary his mother, they bowed down and worshiped him. They opened their treasure boxes and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. 12After being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they went back by another route to their own country.

The Joy of Pain


Luke 2:8-14 Now there were shepherds nearby living out in the field, keeping guard over their flock at night. 9An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were absolutely terrified. 10But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid! Listen carefully, for I proclaim to you good news that brings great joy to all the people: 11Today your Savior is born in the city of David. He is Christ the Lord. 12This will be a sign for you: You will find a baby wrapped in strips of cloth and lying in a manger.” 13Suddenly a vast, heavenly army appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 14“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among people with whom he is pleased!”

The First Noel: Part 2


Matthew 1:1-17 This is the record of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. 2Abraham was the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers, 3Judah the father of Perez and Zerah (by Tamar), Perez the father of Hezron, Hezron the father of Ram, 4Ram the father of Amminadab, Amminadab the father of Nahshon, Nahshon the father of Salmon, 5Salmon the father of Boaz (by Rahab), Boaz the father of Obed (by Ruth), Obed the father of Jesse, 6and Jesse the father of David the king. David was the father of Solomon (by the wife of Uriah), 7Solomon the father of Rehoboam, Rehoboam the father of Abijah, Abijah the father of Asa, 8Asa the father of Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat the father of Joram, Joram the father of Uzziah, 9Uzziah the father of Jotham, Jotham the father of Ahaz, Ahaz the father of Hezekiah, 10Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, Manasseh the father of Amon, Amon the father of Josiah, 11and Josiah the father of Jeconiah and his brothers, at the time of the deportation to Babylon. 12After the deportation to Babylon, Jeconiah became the father of Shealtiel, Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel, 13Zerubbabel the father of Abiud, Abiud the father of Eliakim, Eliakim the father of Azor, 14Azor the father of Zadok, Zadok the father of Achim, Achim the father of Eliud, 15Eliud the father of Eleazar, Eleazar the father of Matthan, Matthan the father of Jacob, 16and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, by whom Jesus was born, who is called Christ.

The First Noel: Part 1


Luke 2:1-7 Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus to register all the empire for taxes. 2This was the first registration, taken when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3Everyone went to his own town to be registered. 4So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family line of David. 5He went to be registered with Mary, who was promised in marriage to him, and who was expecting a child. 6While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. 7And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.

Christmas Forever


Do you love Christmas?  How would you like to keep Christmas alive all year, every year?  Would that be a good feeling to have all the time?

What Child is This?


What Child is this who, laid to rest
On Mary’s lap is sleeping?
Whom angels greet with anthems sweet,
While shepherds watch are keeping?
This, this is Christ the King,
Whom shepherds guard and angels sing;
Haste, haste, to bring Him laud,
The Babe, the Son of Mary.

Do you know who Jesus is?  He wants you to know him.  He gave his life to draw you close.  Will you come to know the Savior?

Open Door Policy – Christmas 2012


Have you ever felt like you were at the end of your rope?  You didn’t know where to turn or what to do?  You felt trapped and powerless?  It’s a state that many have been in.  And people have made many attempts at escape from it.  But the only real release–the only real freedom is found in Jesus.  He is the only one who can open the door to true peace and fulfillment.

How to Ruin Christmas


The Christmas season can be a time of emotional stress and depression and definitely a drain on finances and energy.  But that’s all due to people missing the reason for Christmas.  The world has secularized the holiday, so it is nothing more than a time of shopping and overindulgence and making up stories about where kids’ presents come from.  But for those who actually celebrate the birth of the risen Savior because He has filled their hearts with peace and their lives with love, Christmas is a joy rather than a drain.

Is it Time to Open Presents?


1st John 5:1-5 Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has become a child of God. And everyone who loves the Father loves his children, too. 2We know we love God’s children if we love God and obey his commandments. 3Loving God means keeping his commandments, and his commandments are not burdensome. 4For every child of God defeats this evil world, and we achieve this victory through our faith. 5And who can win this battle against the world? Only those who believe that Jesus is the Son of God.

Second Advent


I think all the prophecy that pointed to Jesus coming is pretty cool.  I watch movies all the time where there’s some sort of prophecy to be fulfilled, and I remember back when Nostradamus was popular in the media, but the movies are just somebody’s imagination and the Nostradamus stuff is just so random that you really have to stretch to make it fit any real events.  But the prophesies about Jesus are real life!  And there are just so many things that match perfectly with his family line for generations and where he’d be born and how he would die and so much stuff.  So, of course, the natural conclusion is, if the prophecy about his first coming was proven, we can be pretty sure about the prophesy of his second coming.  And that means a lot of people are going to be in big trouble if they’re not ready.  And the Bible is pretty clear that you don’t survive the Judgment of Christ by the skin of your teeth.  It’s an all or nothing thing.

A lot of people do religion with a 51% attitude.  They figure as long as they do a little more good than bad, they’ll be ok.  Or they think that God grades on a curve.  So as long as their morality is slightly above average they’ll be fine.  But Jesus demands perfection.  And people who don’t accept that are in for some sad consequences when Jesus comes back.

Of course most people see religion as jumping through hoops and checking off lists, and they totally miss out on the purpose of living for God.  They miss out that God offers grace so that we can stop living in the past, so we can throw off all that old wicked baggage and start with a clean slate.  It’s like God changing your “F” to an “A” and giving us the Holy Spirit as a tutor to help us keep that “A.”  Plus when you realize how much more enjoyable it is to live a good life and to be motivated by love instead of all the bad junk, then you start living a pure life for the joy of it, and religion becomes a pleasurable opportunity.  You look forward to Christ’s return because you love obeying him, and you can’t wait to share the pleasure of his company.  If you miss that crucial point, religion does nothing but offer hoops to jump through and rules to keep track of, and you wind up being lost in your failures.

Religion without true love for God is a joke.  If you think you can please the Almighty God of Heaven with an impersonal 51% effort or a C+ attitude, I’ve got some really bad news for you.